Oxfordshire's strongest athletes will descend on Banbury for town's first strongman event

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Heavy metal and tractor tyres will be thrown about by some of the strongest men and women in Oxfordshire next weekend as Banbury hosts its first strongman event.

Organised by local strongmen Kaleem Niazi and Paddy Haynes, the innagural Oxfordshire’s Strongest Man and Woman competition will see athletes from around the county compete for the title.

After achieving recent success of their own, including Paddy claiming the England’s Strongest Man title last year, the two wanted to bring the sport to their home town of Banbury.

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Kaleem said: “Me and Paddy are Banbury boys born and bred, and we have wanted to hold a strongman event in the town for a long time.”

Banbury's strongmen and founders of Oxfordshire's Strongest Man and Woman, Kaleem Niazi and Paddy Haynes.Banbury's strongmen and founders of Oxfordshire's Strongest Man and Woman, Kaleem Niazi and Paddy Haynes.
Banbury's strongmen and founders of Oxfordshire's Strongest Man and Woman, Kaleem Niazi and Paddy Haynes.

To win the title of the county's strongest, athletes must complete the deadlift and loglift, flip a 400-kilo tyre, run with sandbags and beer kegs, and complete a unique event created by the Banbury men that requires tossing sandbags over a big tractor.

Kaleem added: “There will be about 18 men and 10 women all from around Oxfordshire who will be competing for a share of the £1,000 prize pot and some really cool trophies.

“This year we decided to make the competition invitation-only, but next year we plan to open it up to people from all over the UK. So next year, a man and a woman from Oxfordshire will have to defend the county titles.”

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The event will take place on the market place on Saturday March 2 between 10am and 4pm and will feature stalls selling refreshments.

It is sponsored by a number of local businesses, including Royal Cars, Castle Cars, Williamson Chiropractic Clinic, Cerberus and Paddy’s Gym.